Ministry of Research Technology and Higher Education (KEMRISTEKDIKTI) Director of Research and Community Services Prof. Dr. Ocky Karna Radjasa, M.Sc., and United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Acting Mission Director David Hoffman opened the first Collaboration for Innovation conference at Institut Pertanian Bogor International Convention Center yesterday. This is the first annual gathering of university partners and stakeholders of the USAID Sustainable Higher Education Research Alliance (SHERA) program, a collaborative research partnership program between select Indonesian and U.S. universities implemented with KEMRISTEKDIKTI.
The conference brought together universities, government entities, research and development institutions, the private sectors, non-governmental organizations and donors to discuss ongoing research partnerships and future collaborations while facilitating knowledge exchange among participants. “The United States, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), has a long history of supporting science, technology and innovative research in Indonesia. We are proud to continue this commitment through the SHERA program,” said Acting Mission Director Hoffman.
USAID SHERA partnerships are increasing the capacity of Indonesian higher education institutions to find solutions for the country’s most pressing development challenges. The program supports five Centers for Collaborative Research (CCR) in science, technology and innovation at lead universities, namely Universitas Indonesia, Institut Teknologi Bandung, Universitas Padjadjaran, Universitas Gadjah Mada and Institut Pertanian Bogor. These universities foster research collaboration with 17 other universities across Indonesia and eight universities in the U.S., namely University of Colorado Boulder, University of Colorado Denver, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, University of Rhode Island; Mississippi State University, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, University of Florida and Savannah State University. The research subjects range from clean water distribution to food security to renewable energy solutions.
“Private sector demand is for innovative ideas that are ready to be put to immediate use—that is, ready to market and commercialize. It’s our responsibility to foster the CCRs in such a way that the research results have market value for the private sector,” said Prof. Dr. Ocky. “The private sector is an untapped resource that can transform these research efforts into greater innovations that can reap greater economic returns and prosperity for Indonesia and other countries around the region and indeed the world,” added Hoffman. (Release)